Last night I had an intense dream. In it I ran into my ex, and she was holding a ring in a box. When I confronted her, I asked her how she could be engaged to this new person already, how she could move on so easily. She replied that her father had given her the ring because he knew she was gong through a hard time, and he wanted her to know he was thinking about her. This gutted me because I miss her father and family, and hate the idea that they’ve all been put through this situation in their own ways, but also because I knew it represented how I really wish I could stay mad at her. She treated me in horrendous ways, let there be no doubt, but I tend to fall into sadness and regret more than anger. Anger is easy, and I wish I had her capacity to hold on to anger, but it’s simply beyond me. Later in this dream I wanted to talk to her, but she was constantly elusive, surrounded by friends who literally lifted her up and carried her away. In reality, after I moved out, I was never given the chance to speak to her in person, as she had retreated to her group of supporters, bolstered by their reassurance that she should indeed leave based on the false info she gave them to receive that exact feedback. I never had a chance against someone so efficiently able to fuel, and then reside, in her own anger.

A bit later in this dream I found myself driving to an unknown destination. I followed my route guidance until I came upon a sliver of land that rose up between two shorelines. Waves lapped inward from both sides, as if two oceans were divided by a 15ft swell of land. Reassured by my route guidance, I proceeded down this strip of sand and rocks. As I did so, the waves came in form both sides, touching all four tires of my car. Still I continued on. The next set of waves hit harder, submerging my car up to the windshield, and yet I kept driving, my tires still gripping the wet earth below. The next blast of waves, however, submerged me completely, and I felt my car lift as it floated, water spewing through the window linings and filling my floorboards. At first, panic rose, but in my mind I thought “Of course,” and I let the waters take me away. In my mind, it was just another thing happening to me. Just another thing to make me feel bad, to keep me from a potentially positive destination. The car began to roll, fully off course, fully removed from the small patch of land. I made the decision to exit, to swim to my destination, only when I rose, there was nothing but a single island. As I pulled myself onto the vine covered patch of land, I found a small house. As I approached, an old man opened the door to this house, and told me he wanted nothing to do with me. I knew instantly that this old man was me. Lost, alone, damaged, grizzled, and sequestered on a lone island.

Clearly the symbology is about my current struggle, my insecurity of my place in life, and my very real fear of distancing myself from others until I live on a metaphorical island represented by that old man. I’m trying my best to not let that be the case, but it’s not hard to imagine when I hold nothing but fear of others. Fear and distrust that anyone will ever truly care, but a fear that even if they truly did care, the distrust that I’d be able to believe it.

Will I grow stronger? Oh no. Despite the old adage about what won’t kill you, I think I’ll most definitely not be stronger. I’ve never felt weaker, never felt less of the fight within. Will I process. Will I adapt. Will I cope. Will I forgive. Will I trust.

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